It may not be “Drill, Baby, Drill,” but the platform approved by Democrats in Charlotte this week promotes “cheap, abundant natural gas,” and calls for increased domestic energy production. As FuelFix points out, the party’s platform does make it clear that environmental protection needs to be part of drilling policy. But there’s no question Democrats are pushing for more drilling. More from FuelFix:
“Our dependence on foreign oil is now at a 16-year low, and a new era of cheap, abundant natural gas is helping to bring jobs and industry back to the United States,” the Democrats say in their platform. “We can move towards a sustainable energy-independent future if we harness all of America’s great natural resources.”
The Democratic Party says that means “an all-of-the-above approach to developing America’s many energy resources, including wind, solar, biofuels, geothermal, hydropower, nuclear, oil, clean coal and natural gas.” It also translates to boosting energy efficiency and supporting investments in infrastructure needed to speed the transition to natural gas-powered vehicles and other cleaner transportation fuels.
In their platform, Democrats adopt the same balancing act on domestic fossil fuel production that the Obama administration has, by insisting that “new exploration and production needs to be approached safely and responsibly,” and that development has to be paired with environmental protection.
Of course, platforms are even more symbolic than the conventions themselves these days. Voters pay much more attention to the content of nominees’ speeches. We’ll find out tonight what President Obama has to say about natural gas drilling. But first, a look back at the portion of his 2008 acceptance speech that focused on energy:
And for the sake of our economy, our security, and the future of our planet, I will set a clear goal as president: In 10 years, we will finally end our dependence on oil from the Middle East.
We will do this. Washington — Washington has been talking about our oil addiction for the last 30 years. And, by the way, John McCain has been there for 26 of them.
And in that time, he has said no to higher fuel-efficiency standards for cars, no to investments in renewable energy, no to renewable fuels. And today, we import triple the amount of oil than we had on the day that Senator McCain took office.
Now is the time to end this addiction and to understand that drilling is a stop-gap measure, not a long-term solution, not even close.
As president, as president, I will tap our natural gas reserves, invest in clean coal technology, and find ways to safely harness nuclear power. I’ll help our auto companies re-tool, so that the fuel-efficient cars of the future are built right here in America.
I’ll make it easier for the American people to afford these new cars.
And I’ll invest $150 billion over the next decade in affordable, renewable sources of energy — wind power, and solar power , and the next generation of biofuels — an investment that will lead to new industries and 5 million new jobs that pay well and can’t be outsourced.